decriminalization

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decriminalization

n. the repeal or amendment (undoing) of statutes which made certain acts criminal, so that those acts no longer are crimes or subject to prosecution. Many states have decriminalized certain sexual practices between consenting adults, "loitering," (hanging out without any criminal activity), or out-moded racist laws against miscegenation (marriage or cohabitation between people of different races). Currently, there is a considerable movement toward decriminalization of the use of some narcotics (particularly marijuana) by adults, on various grounds, including individual rights and contention that decriminalization would take the profit out of the drug trade by making drugs available through clinics and other legal sources.

References in periodicals archive ?
Asked why he would not call for decriminalisation in his manifesto, Kennedy said: "It would be inconsistent for me to be arguing for a Royal Commission and then to prejudge it.
The scheme that we have been developing since September is a sensible way of dealing with this problem and I would fear the consequences of legalisation or decriminalisation.
Mr Hellawell, sidelined last year when he was given a part-time role as an adviser on international drugs issues, said of the Government's new policy: ``This would virtually be decriminalisation of cannabis and this is, quite frankly, giving out the wrong message.
The Rev Bill Wallace, of the Church of Scotland's Board of Social Responsi- bility, said: "Where decriminalisation has been introduced it has not led to a decrease in the exploitation of women.
One day, perhaps sooner than you think, proper decriminalisation on the Dutch model, recently followed by Portugal and even Switzerland, will reach Britain, mainly because it will be such a boon for the Treasury.
An influential cross-party House of Commons committee will later this month begin investigating the possible decriminalisation of drugs.
The myths and misconceptions around decriminalisation are numerous.
That upset another member of the Welsh nationalists, Jeff Gregory, who quit when he was told he would have to tow the line after the party formally backed the decriminalisation of the drug.
Cllr Julie Jackson, cabinet member and portfolio holder for planning and development at Nuneaton and Bedworth Borough Council, said: "The borough council will be looking further at the issue of decriminalisation.
IT IS always nice to see the wider Merseyside residents taking an interest in Liverpool, in particular, our proposed parking fines when decriminalisation of parking begins on July 1 (Letters, June 14).
The Labour MP for Cardiff Central said the decriminalisation of the drug would "remove criminals from the equation" and could provide a "handy cash crop" for British farmers suffering after the foot-and-mouth crisis, BSE and concerns over GM crops.
Sir Paul McCartney was attacked last night after making a new call for the decriminalisation of cannabis.